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Engaging Patients in Research

The PREDICT project aims to engage all staff and all new cancer patients in the process of research to improve care.

Multidisciniplary teams at BC Cancer's Vancouver Island Centre developed the PREDICT project. PREDICT stands for Personal Response Determinants in Cancer Therapy.

Less than 10% of staff and patients were once involved in research at the centre. Because of PREDICT, now 70% of all new patients are approached; of these, over 90% choose to become involved in research and provide a blood sample and permission to be contacted to discuss future research projects.

PREDICT has developed though design and pilot phases since early 2006, and became a full program in 2008. It is now a part of our daily life and culture, driven centre-wide by staff and volunteers and new patients.

The Vancouver Island Centre is located in Victoria, BC, on the southern tip of Vancouver Island.


 It is a unique project that has embedded a research culture into the day-to-day clinical care activities of the Vancouver Island Centre.

The goals of PREDICT are to:

  1. create a population-scale biobank of blood samples obtained prior to initiation of systemic therapy from 20,000 new cancer patients;
  2. obtain permission from all new patients to be contacted to participate in future research projects, overcoming ethical and logistical hurdles to translational health research; and
  3. engage 75% of new patients and staff at the VIC in a common research endeavour that changes the culture of a cancer centre.

PREDICT provides a unique platform to support specific research into host factors, such as the patient’s immune system and adverse reactions to therapy, that influence the outcome of cancer therapies. It is unique in Canadian cancer centres, and other BC Cancer centres are currently planning to emulate it.

Process for patients

New patients are offered the opportunity to participate in PREDICT by their oncologist at the time of their first appointment at the Centre. If they are interested in the program, further details are provided by PREDICT staff.

Participants are asked to provide a blood sample to be used for future cancer research, and permission to be contacted to learn about future research projects.

Process for researchers

PREDICT is an open research resource for access by qualified investigators. The access process involves submission of a formal application, review of this by a PREDICT review committee and documentation of Research Ethics Board approval for the specific research proposed.

SOURCE: Engaging Patients in Research ( )
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